Tag: governance

A Popular Uprising Can Oust Putin

Putin’s place at the long table in the Kremlin is more insecure than ever, and even though he will cling to power, it is not inevitable that he will succeed. Fears that the so-called colour revolutions will spread to Russia have dogged Putin’s time in power. Colour revolutions in two of Russia’s neighbours, Georgia and… Read more »

Why Putin is Losing – The Weakness of Personalist Dictatorship

When personalistic dictators go to war, they are more likely to miscalculate and lose than leaders of other types of regimes. Such failures can have dramatic consequences for the stability of their regime at home, as well as for the rest of the world. Russia’s grotesque invasion of Ukraine is one of the most horrific… Read more »

Ukraine as an Instance of State Repression

The crisis in Ukraine reveals some distinct opinions about how the world is viewed. Most accurately, people see Russia as distinct from Ukraine, in which case what is taking place would be best evaluated as interstate war. Putin and his supporters, however, seem to see things in a different way. On the one hand, they… Read more »

We Shouldn’t Be Surprised by Putin’s Invasion

The wheel of history is now in motion. Russia’s gruesome attack on Ukraine disrupts one of the most significant trends in the history of nation states, namely the astounding absence of large-scale wars of invasion and occupation in Europe since the end of World War II. For many years, peace researchers have pointed out that… Read more »

No Way around a Dangerous Confrontation with Putin’s Russia

I, along with many other commentators, believed until the very end that war in Ukraine was preventable and would ultimately not take place. Very sadly, and concerningly, I was wrong. Why did I hold out hope so long for the avoidance of war? What does the invasion of Ukraine tell us about Putin’s regime? And… Read more »

Democracy Works, Even in Weak States

Political scientists have long assumed that a strong state is a prerequisite for a well-functioning democracy. Recent research suggests that this assumption is wrong. “Building a modern democratic state in Afghanistan where the government’s writ runs uniformly throughout the country implies a timeframe of many years, indeed decades,” wrote the former American Secretary of State… Read more »

Parliamentary Election in Kosovo: Democratic Development and Desire for Change

Less than a year after the fall of the Kosovo government led by left-wing reformist party Vetëvendosje (“Self-Determination”), the same party has returned to power. Following a landslide victory in the parliamentary election last Sunday, Vetëvendosje is set to form a government with a markedly stronger mandate than the first time around. The election outcome… Read more »

Clean Cobalt? A new initiative for a key mineral in electric vehicles

In September of this year, Tesla joined the Fair Cobalt Alliance (FCA), a new fair trade initiative launched by the Impact Facility earlier this year. The initiative aims to develop a supply of fairly sourced cobalt by improving practices and behaviors at cobalt mining sites. Specific goals of the FCA include eradicating the use of… Read more »

Whoever Wins the American Presidential Election, Democracy is Losing

The nation’s frenzied attention on the presidential election comes amid the backdrop of the crucial issues of the COVID-19 pandemic, police violence, racial protest, militia threats, the Supreme Court and active attempts at voter suppression. Supporters of both presidential candidates see the other side’s win as apocalyptic. Our recent research shows that no matter who… Read more »

Public-Private Partnerships during COVID-19: time to ask some questions

To say that the world was not prepared for a pandemic is an understatement. The point was made early on that in order to overcome COVID-19 and make it to the other side, it was “all hands-on deck”. This included individuals, health experts, governments, the private sector and – the focus of this piece –… Read more »